(1939-08-30) Get to Know You
Details for Get to Know You
Summary: Samira and Abraxas have lunch at the Malfoy Manor in Wiltshire. Their conversation meanders through topics relating to life at and after Hogwarts, Muggles and mudbloods, and Samira's life in Egypt.
Date: August 30, 1939
Location: Malfoy Manor in Wiltshire

The huge and opulent Malfoy Manor in Wiltshire is of ancient lineage, earned by Armand Malfoy for services to William the Conqueror. It is all stone and dark wood, with pictures of the platinum haired Malfoy ancestors looking down from the walls in mild disapproval of the later generations, who cannot possibly live up to their exacting standards. A house elf servant meets Samira and her governess by whatever the means of their arrival, and says, "The Young Master is in the drawing room, Miss Price. Please follow." He leads her through the great hall of the estate, past fireplaces large enough to hold the average first-year class, and through a door tall enough to admit a troll, and then into the drawing room. Abraxas stands in front of the empty grate of the fireplace, his hands clasped behind his back, looking, for the moment, quite adult. Agathe lolls nearby, reclining on a cushion in cattish contentment.

"Young Master, the Miss Prince is here."

"You may go." Abraxas says, and the house elf disappears without further comment, save for the crack of apparating to somewhere else in the estate, no doubt in earshot. Abraxas turns and offers a charming smile, "Samira, how good to see you again." He approaches and offers his hand to take hers and kiss it in continental politeness. He really can be quite charming when he puts his mind to it. "The journey was not taxing, I hope?"

This is not the sort of invitation one turns down. Samira arrives at the Malfoy manor in the care of her governess. Her dark curls tumble down her back, wild and unruly as before, but the girl herself is wearing a new summer dress of robin's egg blue silk. Hands clasped behind her back, she steps into the drawing room.

As Abraxas kisses her hand, she dips into a curtsy so deep that she almost seems to mock the gesture. Her impish smile makes it seem that the joke is shared, rather than at his expense. "Not at all. The carriage you sent for me was beautiful."
Samira pauses, glancing over her shoulder as the servant closes the door, leaving them in privacy. Looking back up at the tall, pale haired boy, she tilts her head. "I am curious… though, my uncle and governess tell me I should be honored. Why have you invited me?" Her dark gaze studies his own dark blue eyes with keen interest.

"Perhaps I should like to get to know you without our oh-so-gallant head boy about to keep you away from a monster like me?" Abraxas suggests, with a little curl of his lip that might generously be called a smile, "Or perhaps I just find you interesting and want to know a bit more before we all pile onto that train and head back to school and get lost in preparations for OWLs this year." A little shrug, and he motions towards a table set for two, currently with a fruit bowl and a pair of plates set on it. "And I thought perhaps I owed you an apology after things at the coffee shop yesterday." Despite the general smoothness of it, there is a bit of a hitch before the word 'apology'. "Though as I was leaving, I thought I saw your governess hurrying you out."

Meanwhile, his cat looks up, and Agathe raises a paw, meows, and stretches before settling back down. "I'm fairly certain that is a hello." Abraxas offers.

Samira arches a brow, looking both amused and intrigued as he refers to Zayn protecting her from a 'monster' like him. She blinks, a bit surprised by his mention of an apology. And, she laughs a bit when he refers to how her governess had hauled her out of the cafe in a storm of fury. Hands clasped behind her back, she approaches the table. The cat's mewl catches her attention and she glances over. "I happen to know exactly what she said…" Samira glances over to Abraxas with that impish smile of hers. "And you are correct. But… take care, your cat will betray your secrets…"

"How would Agathe betray my…" He stops, mouth drawing into a small 'o' as it clicks into place, "Oh, I see. You shouldn't tell people that, probably. Well, not if you want to take ruthless advantage of it, which you should." He looks down at Agathe, and confides in the cat, "I suppose that we should stay on her good side, hrm, Agathe?" He cat mrrowls again, no doubt agreeing with her owner - they have a lot in common, what with being pure blood and proud, in their respective fields.

Agathe, for her part, chimes in with, "You should be pack mate with platinum hair. Your scent is agreeable. Maybe you make him listen to me more."

"Mm… I can take advantage of it whether or not anyone knows." Samira sits at the table with a sleek, almost sensual grace. Rather catlike herself. She observes Agathe with obvious amusement for a moment before glancing once more to Abraxas. "Your mind is an interesting one, Abraxas Malfoy. Most, when they learn that I speak Hisskratch, ask me at once what their cat has said. But you? Your first thought is of its uses and advantages. The Slytherine house truly is for the cunning."

Abraxas has learned enough manners to move to help her push the chair in, then adjusts his robes as he sits down across from her. He picks up an apple and takes a small penknife from his pocket to begin peeling it. "My mind is probably one of the more interesting things about me, yes. And who would not take advantage of such a thing. Do you know how many Hogwarts students have cats? Or how many witches and wizards. A relatively undetectable source of information." He gives a little shrug, looking up from his work with the apple.

"Cats are often unreliable and self-absorbed," says Samira, watching the penknife move easily through the apple. "Good for rumors, but little else. Their world focuses little on ours. Except, your Agathe seems to be an exception. She has much to say regarding you and what she wishes for you."

"No, Agathe is completely self-absorbed, believe me." Abraxas says, and sure enough, the cat has wandered over to find a corner to curl up in, batting at something that amuses her. "I am pleased that you accepted my invitation, though. Away from the filthy mudbloods and their bootlickers. They act so high and mighty, as if magic somehow belonged to them." He cuts a slice of apple off and offers it across the table to her, held on the edge of the knife. "I hope you weren't in too much trouble yesterday?"

Samira ignores the slurs and simply shrugs when he mentions the trouble. Accepting the slice of apple, she nods appreciatively and brings it to her lips for a bite. "A fair bit. But, it was nothing new." She considers the apple for a moment before glancing over at him. "It has been interesting how much those of different heritage intermingle here. Where I am from, it is rare for a muggleborn to ever approach a pureblood in a sociable setting."

Abraxas snorts, "A far more civilized arrangement, certainly. Perhaps we wouldn't hate them so much if they weren't so brash about rubbing it in. Still, their very existence is hateful. But then you have them playing at being Ministry staff, Aurors, hit-wizards, healers, and the like. Real, wizarding professions. Someday, one of them will think he can be Minister." A shake of his head, as if that's outrageous, "They need to learn their place. Back with their muggle parents, not in our world or our school." Another slice of the apple, this one for him, and then he cuts another for her. "You saw how they acted. That one had the temerity to try and demand I apologize! Hah! For calling a spade a spade? That's like apologizing to a troll for calling it ugly."

"I find them interesting," says Samira mildly and unapologetic as she nips at her new apple slice. "And I suppose that will make me as peculiar to some here as I was to everyone in at the Heka School of Ancient Magic. The muggleborns would always get so nervous when I would sit down next to them." Her impish laughter suggests she rather enjoyed this too.

"I can't stand them. Bringing their muggle ways and their muggle things into our world. Magic should be for wizards, and muggles should stay muggles. I don't think we should have anything to do with them, if we can avoid it." He continues to cut up the apple, but a more human servant appears this time - through the door - and brings in a plate of sandwiches and a pitcher of iced tea and two tall glasses of ice. "Perhaps I can teach you a few things, about the school. Provided you're sorted into the right House, of course."

Samira shrugs, unoffended and unperturbed by his prejudice. To each his own. As long as he doesn't require her to modify her behavior, she will not ask the same of him. "In your mind, that would be the Slytherin, yes? How does one find their way into a house?"

"The sorting hat. At the opening dinner, the hat recites some sort of terrible poem about the history of the Houses, and then it’s put on each person’s head and it sorts them into the appropriate house. Slytherin for the clever, Gryffindor for the brave, Ravenclaw for the smart, Hufflepuff for the oddballs." At least, that's the way it seems to him, though that's not exactly the case. The fruit is moved aside and the sandwiches put in front of them. Two glasses of iced tea are poured. "I'll save you a seat next to me if you're sorted into Slytherin." He gives her a bit more genuine a grin.

"I suspect I will be placed into Slytherin," says Samira, returning his grin. "Cunning and clever? That is an interesting distinction between the wise and learned ones of Ravenclaw. I would not consider myself either of those." She takes a sip of iced tea before adding, "Books and knowledge are a means to an end. Nothing more."

"Book knowledge or the ability to apply it, yes." Abraxas says, with a chuckle. "I have a… certain level of ruthlessness, I suppose. But I think you need that to get ahead in the world, especially in a world filled with the sort of people who aren't like us." He moves a sandwich to her plate, and then one to his, before clapping his hands once and saying, "Good. We shall be friends, then. As it happens, the Malfoys are always Slytherins. Well… there was this one cousin, but she's a bit odd."

"You may find I can be a bit odd, but as long as you don't require I conform, I will not require you to be peculiar," says Samira with a grin. She glances to the sleeping cat. "Agathe will be pleased. She told me I should be your companion."

"Did she? How curious." Abraxas says, "I didn't know she had opinions on such things. As far as conforming… well, I think you'll see that I have the right of it, in time. The mudbloods are just so terribly common and unwizarding. I, on the other hand, plan for a position in the Ministry after school. And, being a Malfoy, I expect that my natural ability will take me right to the top." He's humble, too. It's one of his many positive character traits.

Samira smiles with a relaxed amusement. The girl doesn't doubt his family's wealth and connections will help propel him as well. Glancing down at the iced tea in her hand, she says, "I suspect that there are many plans for what I should become and do once I have graduated. My mother's family wants me to return to Egypt, no doubt to marry well and take a high place in society. My father? He wishes me to remain here."

"Too soon to think about marriage, if you ask me. At least three years before we finish up, and then get started in the real world outside the Castle." Abraxas says, sipping his iced tea and cutting the finger sandwiches even smaller so that he picks up only one bite at a time. "Do you have any inclination of what you want to do?"

Samira shakes her head. "Not quite yet." She takes a bite of sandwich before, adding with a grin, "And in my culture, it wouldn't be unusual for my parents to have already arranged a suitable match."

"That would be quite inconvenient for you if you wanted to stay here, wouldn't it?" the Malfoy's tone seems to beg the question of why anyone would want to go back to someplace like Egypt. Even if there are Wizards all over the place. "We don't exactly arrange marriages. Though parents might encourage interaction with a potential mate of appropriate lineage."

And no doubt her uncle will encourage continued interaction with Abraxas. But, Samira leaves this unsaid. Instead, she settles back comfortably in her chair to observe Abraxas over the brim of her glass. "I haven't decided if I will stay here or not. In the East, we never attempt to foretell our /own/ futures. And I do not care for dwelling on any moment but the present."

"Probably a wise philosophy. Who knows what the future holds. Well, seers, but they don't exactly tell us clearly, do they? Especially not with everything swirling the way it is around Mr. Grindelwald. He's completely right about magic for wizards only, pure magic, and returning to more ancient forms." Abraxas doesn't comment on outing themselves to muggles, though, and given what he's just said, the reason might be obvious.

"More ancient forms?" Samira arches a brow. "I thought you considered the magic practiced /here/ to be the more proper sort. Do more ancient methods interest you?"

"Anything powerful interests me." Abraxas says, with a nod, "But in truth, I'm not sure they mean quite as ancient as you are thinking. More… an era when there was less corruption in the Wizarding bloodlines."

"Ah, I see. I suspect you would like Egypt. It is almost unheard of for a pureblood to wed one who is not also pure. At least, as far as I have seen. I am curious as to why you are so concerned with this though. Are you afraid that muggle blood will dilute our own until we lose our magic completely?" Samira tilts her head, watching Abraxas curiously.

"That is one potential outcome. Or the muggles will continue to steal our magic until that which makes us special is gone. Or some muggleborn will reveal that we exist to them, and they will try to destroy us again, as they did in the time of my ancestors." Abraxas explains, giving at least some rational explanation for this particular bigotry. "It seems that despite being strange foreigners, the Egyptians might have much to recommend them, yes."

Samira smiles as she listens, taking small, appreciative bites of her sandwich. "To us, you are a strange foreigner. /I/ was a strange foreigner. My surname, Prince, was quite unusual. The muggleborns of my land are quite peculiar. Far more so than the ones here. But, even the most peculiar ones, when you sit and speak with them, they are not so different. Their dreams and dramas are similar to ours."

"Yes, I suppose you do have one dainty foot in both realms, don't you." Abraxas says, with a snort. "But it doesn't matter. You're a Prince, and that means that you belong here. At least in my opinion." Which is the only one that matters, just ask him. "As for the muggle-born, I have no doubt that they are real people who have real concerns. I just don't care what those concerns are, and think they should live them out with all the other muggles and leave us to the business of magic."

Samira's dark gaze fixes on the pale young man. His assertion that she belongs /here/ rather than somewhere else is not something she has heard very often, if ever. A softer smile seems to warm her features. The relaxed mirth soon returns once he starts to go off about muggles and muggleborn again. Nodding, she says, "That is the common attitude of my homeland. Except, as I said, it is also rare within the magical community for those of different heritage to associate much with each other."

"Indeed. I won't repeat myself by saying that I agree." Though he does, one supposes. The sandwiches are taken away, and the iced tea is replaced with carafes of regular tea and coffee, along with a plate of sweets. "So what other interesting things have you learned in Egypt?"

"Many things," says Samira with an enigmatic smile. She helps herself to a little cake and slices it with the side of her fork. "The ancient Egyptian sorcerers are famed for their magic of the dead. I do not suppose that these are studies I will be able to continue at Hogwarts." Her smile is a touch wicked as she glances up at Abraxas.

"We learn about the Dark Arts, but only to protect ourselves from those who might decide to use them against us." Abraxas says, with a little shrug, as he picks up a lindor tart and puts it on his plate, then pours himself a small cup of coffee, with a heavy helping of cream and sugar. Apparently he has something of a sweet tooth. "Though Professor Flint has hinted that we might learn some more powerful spells soon."

Samira arches a brow, looking intrigued. "Oh? I did not expect that." She takes a bite of cake, looking thoughtful before adding, "Ah, and I know how to dance. Our dances are very different from yours."

"What I mean to say is that they don't teach us dark magic. But they teach us what to look for, and what might be used against us." Abraxas clarifies. With a bit of disappointment that he doesn't get to learn the cool magic. "I don't really know how to dance." he says, "A few steps for the formals, that's about it. It's not the sort of thing I've had to worry about."

"It is not the sort of dancing you do /with/ someone. It is the sort of dancing you watch. Perhaps one day I will show you," says Samira before pouring herself a cup of coffee. She keeps it dark and bitter. As she takes a small sip, she closes her eyes, savoring its taste. "This is quite good," she remarks, pleasantly surprised.

"I'm pleased that you approve." Abraxas replies, and then adds, "I'd like that. I think you should dance for me." A flicker of his eyes over towards her governess, and then, "Eventually." The governess won't be following her to Hogwarts, after all. He sips his coffee and breaks the tart into little pieces.

Samira grins at her governess sitting across the spacious room with a cup of tea. "Yes, my governess would not approve. She caught me practicing and told me that it was a shocking sight. She did not understand that it is an ancient and noble art."

Abraxas leans across the table and says conspiratorially, "Now I want to see it even more…"

Samira's laughter is wicked and impish. "I am certain you do." Lifting a hand she demonstrates the perfect, sleek grace of her movement. Her wrist twists and her hand arches as her arm almost seems to undulate. She pauses, holding her slender arm poised in the air as she glances at Abraxas.

"Good. The first Hogsmeade Weekend, then, we'll find a private spot." Abraxas continues, his voice holding an edge of demand, though he then sits back and smiles a bit, going back to eating his cookie contently, his eyes fixing on her like she is a snakecharmer and he the serpent when she demonstrates even that little bit.

"In Hogsmeade?" Samira lowers her hand, taking up her coffee once more. "That is the village next to the castle, yes? Are there not places in the school where I could have enough space to dance?"

"There are always eyes at Hogwarts. And I don't like to share." Abraxas responds, curtly, giving a little laugh. "You think your governess is always over your shoulder, it’s no different in the Castle."

Samira arches a brow, rather amused at the possessive sentiments of Abraxas' response. "I don't mind who sees. I performed often at Heka. I cannot remember if Zayn has seen me or not. At gatherings, my mother-" Samira falters, her smile fading. "My mother would often require me to perform." She glances away and takes another sip of coffee.

"Things are a bit different here." Abraxas offers, with a slight tilt of his head, taking his coffee cup and leaning back with it held between his hands, long thin fingers tapping at the cup. "The thought of your mother pains you?" he asks.

Samira shrugs, gazing out of one of the drawing room windows onto the magnificent grounds surrounding the Malfoy estate. "I did not know her well." She glances back at Abraxas and smiles a bit too wide, "It did make life interesting though."

"That isn't all that convincing, you know. Don't take pages out of my book and then do them worse than me." Abraxas replies, with a snicker, "But I won't ask you about it right now. Since you don't want to talk about it. When we get to know each other better, perhaps."

Samira laughs impishly and settles back comfortably in her chair. "It did," she asserts. "I would not be here otherwise." She takes a sip of coffee before setting it down. "Of course, my mother's death pains me. But, not as much as it should have."

"Parents die, eventually. And then the next generation takes over, and does things differently. My own mother is… often indisposed, though she gives me anything I want." There is a definite sense of entitlement there, as if he's supposed to get everything anyway. After all, he's a Malfoy. "Your relationship with her was not a good one?"

"What relationship? She took little interest in me." Samira pauses before conceding, "Except to hire my tutors. She had interest in my education, but I saw her little. And she certainly did not give me anything I want." She reflects on this a moment, sipping her coffee. "It did make me strong. Self-reliant."

Abraxas pours himself another cup of coffee, then sits back and looks at her, and says, "I think you will be a fine Slytherin. I'm not the sorting hat, but I suspect you'll… fit right on."

Samira glances up at him with a smile. "I suspect so. The others would not suit me so well. Tell me, what year will you be in? How old are you?"

"I'm fifteen. I'll be sixteen in February. I'm in the Fifth year." Abraxas answers, "So, I take OWLs this year."

"Ah, I will turn sixteen in February as well. On the 19th. Tell me, OWLs are a test, yes?" Samira tilts her head, watching Abraxas curiously.

"My birthday is the second. It appears I'm the older of us." Abraxas points out, with a chuckle, "Yes, they're a test. To see if you can leave school or move on to more advanced studies."

"I perform well in exams, despite how I test my professor's patience," says Samira with a grin. She takes another bite of cake. Mmm, chocolate. "So, I will be in your year and, I expect, in your house. It seems we will see much of each other. Agathe will be pleased." Looking to the cat, she gives a couple of soft, sweet mewls. And now the cat knows.

"I'm taking Arithmancy and Ancient Runes this year as my electives. Better than digging in the dirt for plants or learning about…" an elegant shudder from Abraxas, "Muggles. Or Divination. Or other such nonsense."

"I have instructions to take Arithmancy and Ancient Runes as well. I think I will also continue to study Divination. It would be interesting to see how such arts contrast with those I learned at Heka," says Samira with a bit of a grin. The fact that Abraxas considers that subject to be nonsense doesn't seem to bother her at all.

"Aren't you the clever one." Abraxas remarks, drolly, though he gives her a bit of a smile in return. "Yes, it does seem that we will be seeing quite a bit of each other, doesn't it?"

"Is there a student association for those who would like to practice performing arts? Ah, and I think I forgot to mention, I also know how to sing. The songs are in Arabic, and their quality may seem strange to you though." Samira glances over toward her governess. "She does not care for them much."

"There is an Arts club of some sort, yes." Abraxas answers, with a grin, sipping his coffee, "Are you planning to join it? I don't know what they get up to." He follows her glance to the governess, "How delightfully fore… exotic." he remarks, then says, "I doubt she cares for anything, does she."

Samira laughs with a nod. "It seems so. Ah, except for an invitation to your home. She was quite pleased. Told me I should be honored. But, I am a foolish, ignorant girl for not knowing more of the noble Western families." She shakes her head and takes up her cup of coffee. "It is obvious your family is powerful and wealthy. And it is also clear that you are learning to wield the influence of your name and to acquire a strength of character of your own."

"The Malfoys have lived in this home for nine hundred years, and have been pureblooded for just as long. I can trace my lineage back generation upon generation. So yes, we are an old, proud name, and deservedly so. And what good is having all that if you make no use of it, hrm?"

"True," says Samira with a nod. She refills her coffee cup and takes another sip. "I suppose you are as ignorant of my heritage as I was of yours. The Azam family traces their lineage back centuries. Your home is beautiful, but my family's home is akin to a palace."

"This is a palace. Or what passes for one here. I shall have to show you the gardens someday. There are other homes as well, but this is the ancestral one. My father, as patriarch of our house, lives here. As I will, when the time comes for me to assume that title. My wife will be Madame Malfoy, eventually. Not that I'm quite ready to become a husband yet. I'm not even a grown man yet!" Abraxas answers, and then nods, "Well, I knew that your parents were both wizards. It is interesting to know that your family is so ancient on your mother's side. Your father's family is well regarded here, as well."

Samira nods, knowing the weight of both her family names. She watches him with a smile. "Yes, there is still much time before you need to choose a wife. That is something I like about the West. There is more time to explore." She glances off around the room. "So, tell me. How do you spend your time here?"

"Mostly extremely bored. That's why I spend so much time in London before school. But that time is over. This summer, I'll have an apprenticeship with the Ministry." Abraxas says, pursing his lips and exhaling, "Mainly I play chess and read and entertain a few friends." He's been, up until this point, too young for girls.

"Chess? I do not know that game well. Perhaps you will teach me. And tell me, what sort of apprenticeship? Is this common for all students to take apprenticeships?" asks Samira, leaning forward to watch Abraxas with interest.

"I'm rather surprised, I think it began in Persia or something like that. Not too far from Egypt, after all." The Malfoy boy may be an ass, but at least he's a well-read ass. "It's common, if they seek careers in certain fields."

Samira just laughs when Abraxas tells her that chess originated in the Middle East. Nodding, she says, "Yes, we have the game. I still do not know how to play well though. I always lose. And do you mean we are to chose are careers this year?" She tilts her head.

"It's more of a… trial run?" Abraxas suggests, with a little shrug, "To see if you like them and they like you. I mean, you have fifth and sixth year summers to try different places, if you want to. You don't have to choose your career. Though what you want to do might impact what classes you take the next two years."

"Ah. That is a relief. I still want to explore." Samira glances off out the window. "I'd like to see more of your home. You said you have gardens? Could I see them? Or does the hour grow late?" Perhaps it is a bit brash of her to make such a request, but then she /is/ foreign.

"Of course. I'm happy to take you for a walk in the gardens before you're whisked away home." Abraxas says, standing and offering her his arm in a show of good breeding. He leads her through the house - the governess no doubt tagging along a reasonable distance behind, and then he takes her out a set of tall double doors and into the carefully sculpted - and huge - English-style gardens.

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